The importance of new products to reinvent or renew existing retail spaces played a critical role this year as retailers undertook fewer new store openings and full-scale remodels. Trade show attendees were more eager than ever for product advancements and new affordable options that would breathe fresh life into a space.
Advancements in lighting, especially LED technology, continued to improve light output and efficiency. Award-winning fixture designs showed a happy marriage between beauty and function.
A return to hand-crafting in visual merchandising meant that visual props trended toward familiar materials, such as glass and natural fibers, as retailers continued to do more with less. Realistic mannequins also gained popularity, while new styles of abstracts, including more dynamic poses and unusual finishes, made a statement.
Tough times didn’t spell the end of green, as manufacturers rolled out planet-friendly products or expanded their existing green lines.